A Place Beyond The Priory

 "A Place Beyond the Priory " This is a story about Life in North Shields during the 1900's-1920's Tom Farrow is a third generation coble fisherman, Who meets and falls in love with a young herring girl who has travelled from the isle of Barra in the outer Hebrides looking for work. Margaret Linnie, her two friends Kerstin McDonald and Beth Munro all end up on the gutting line in Tyne Brand - their unscrupulous foreman Albert Mortimer treats all the girls on the line like animals including his wife Lizzie who bares him 11 children. forced into a marriage she did not want, Lizzie is abused by Albert for his own sexual gratification. She was in love with a young Greek boy called Leonidas Kostalas whom she had known from her days at school and lost her virginity to but her father will not allow them to marry- this is a story of love and betrayal and will keep you riveted until the last page is read.

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Do you like to read?’

Never read a book in my life from cover to cover but I could be converted.

“When I was time to leave Jack took Sally by the hand and he walked with her up the road. When they neared her house Sally stopped. “I just live over there.’ 

“Not far to come then.’

“Well I’ll be saying good night then said Sally as she made to turn away.’

“Excuse me said Jack; haven’t you forgotten something.’

“No; I’ve got everything; what have I forgot?’

“My goodnight kiss; I mean I was good enough to kiss you so the least you could do is reciprocate.’

Really Jack Farrow you are incorrigible.’

“I’m waiting.’

Sally walked back towards him then pecked him on the cheek. Jack took her by the hand and pulled her towards him. Now I didn’t kiss you like that did I?’

“Kiss me properly.’ Sally looked into his clear blue eyes as he held her in his arms her lips met his and they kissed passionately. Sally made no effort to pull away from him so he kissed her again.

“See you at lunch time he said as he walked back down the path to his grandparent’s house. He gave Sally a wave before going inside. That was the start of their romance

“When Jack wasn’t fishing he would ring her; most of the houses on Barra had a telephone now so he could chat away for hours on end.

He cadged a lift of a trawler Aurora Borealis in North Shields; they were going fishing off the Shetlands they told him that they would drop him off and told him that they would pick him up in three days.

Jack spent three days with Sally then asked if she would come and stay at his house.

Jack had put down a deposit on a house in Mast Lane. His father had helped him get a mortgage. Sally’s father John had said she could go if she could get a friend to go with her. Sally asked Katie and she agreed.

Jack paid for passage on board the trawler and the two girls slept in the skipper’s cabin. Both girls were used to going out in fishing boats and taking the ferry so the passage back to North Shields wasn’t too bad for them. Jack showed them around the town then they took a bus to Cullercoats. “We are invited to my mothers for dinner tonight so be ready at six o’clock. I’m going down to check the boat; my dad should be coming in soon. Jack walked along the promenade past the Dove Marine Sea Museum then down the bank onto the beach. He put his hand over his eyes and looked out to see if his father was coming back in. Then he walked to the life boat station where Rob Black was looking out of the large window with a pair of binoculars.’

“What’s it like out there Rob?’

“It’s pretty choppy at the minute Jack.’ “Is your father due back anytime?’

“Yes,’ usually about five forty five.’

“Well its only quarter past so no panic yet.’

Jack kept borrowing the binoculars and looking out but there were no signs of his father. When six o’clock came and went Jack knew his father was in trouble two other crewmen joined the team Mickey Robson and Terry Brock; they were experienced lifeboat men having been in service for over twenty five years.’

Okay boys lets go for a launch said rob after scanning the horizon for the last time.

“Can I come along Rob?’

Yes, grab a life jacket and put it on.

Jack jumped into the boat as the coxswain launched the boat and off they went.

“You know the area where you father fishes don’t you Jack?’

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